Some games are simply “destined” to be polarizing (if you’ll pardon the pun), such seems to be the case with Bungie’s new epic, “Destiny”. There are denizens of gamers lined up on both sides of this fight already, with quite a few in the LOVE camp as well as more than a few on the HATE side. Simply put, this really isn’t the sort of title that you can easily pigeonhole and segregate, largely because it seeks to do mix things up in the gameplay department. Nevertheless, one can’t really argue (honestly and logically, anyway) that Destiny is a “bad” game, can they? I mean, even after you’ll tallied all the quips and gripes from disgruntled gamers you still have a AAA title, right?
Perhaps part of the reason people are so torn on this one has to do with two main things – the way the “story” is told and the way some of the cooperative missions seem to be based largely on repetition. Well, for starters, it’s hard to imagine a more grandiose plot than what Bungie has offered us here; it’s the sort of tale that could seemingly encapsulate nearly anything. Ask any game developer – at best, landing a bona-fide smash hit is pure luck, at worst, it’s almost impossible. Often times the big success stories seem to occur purely by chance, in fact (just look at Notch and the story of Mojang). Anyway, having already produced a string of big time games, it’s crazy to think of Bungie as anything less than a top tier developer, clearly, Destiny is evidence of their expertise, even if you don’t personally like it that much.
For those that are open to it however, this sci-fi shooter-meets-RPG (and a few other things) is a breath of fresh air. On its surface it sort of seems to take cues from games like Borderlands, where the main focus is on trawling through various locales amid high-tension gunplay. All of this is offset by the obligatory upgrading, crafting and treasure / loot-seeking, of course, which also echoes Borderlands. However, if you stopped there then you’d only be looking at half the story.
Destiny is also an always online game, which means that (by its very design) a lot of the “guts” of the experience takes place on servers which are remote from the gamer and their hardware. Clearly, this seems to be a clarion call that traditional modern FPS makers have been influenced by the likes of Minecraft and its methodology. Hands down, this title just oozes polish and struts its technological stuff. It’s impossible to play it for any length of time and now be wowed by its obvious graphical flair and appeal. Without a doubt, many will probably spend their first couple of hours just gawking at the environments and lighting effects, not to mention the futuristic realism.
The gameplay aspect of Destiny is just as strong though, with plenty of action for those that want it and enough customization and diversity to keep nearly anyone busy for hours, days, weeks, months… In reality, this is the type of title that you have to a.) be in the mood for and b.) enjoy its unique brand of action. The enemy AI alone is sophisticated enough to lure in any fan of first-person gunplay. It’s impressive to watch how they band together and exhibit some sense of strategy amidst all the chaos.
Now, let’s look at some of the “hate” for this game…just to keep things balanced. Hands down, the biggest qualm most people will want to point out is this game’s deviation from the typical MMORPG standard. In other words, yes, you might see the same terrain more than a few times and carry out some rather redundant tasks, which might immediately turn off some who are seeking a much more open and freeing experience. This is what many hoped the game would be, of course – a complete sandbox spanning the galaxy, but that’s clearly more than we can hope for at this particular point. Then there’s there are the issues with the story, which many have said seem like excuses laid out in narrative form. The problem is that a lot of people simply feel that many elements within the plot were put there to “fill in the gaps” in various places, with obscure explanations serving to deter you from asking further questions.
How do you feel, do you LOVE or HATE Destiny? …the comment section is below, have at it.